Lake George Waterkeeper Chris Navitsky has called road salt “the acid rain of our time.”
Now, a newly-completed study of Adirondack wells claims that most wells that receive runoff from state roads are contaminated with salt.
The study conducted by the Paul Smith’s College Adirondack Watershed Institute comes on the heels of an earlier study that argued that 84% of the contamination of surface waters by road salting could be attributed to state practices. » Continue Reading.
On June 11 and 12, 2018, the Adirondack Pollinator Project is set to host two free public lectures by Kim Eierman, an environmental horticulturist specializing in ecological landscapes and native plants.
Attendees will have the opportunity to learn how to create habitat for pollinators in their own backyards. After the lecture, a one-hour reception will give guests the chance to ask questions and begin planning their own pollinator gardens. Free packet of wildflower seeds will be distributed and there will be a limited supply of pollinator plants for sale. » Continue Reading.
AdkAction has announced the grand opening and ribbon cutting of the “Farmacy” fresh food retail space in the Keeseville Pharmacy on Friday, November 17th from 4 to 6 pm. A reception with sweet and savory snacks and wine and beer will be held following the ribbon cutting at the Fresh and Fancy Bakery across the street. The ribbon cutting and reception are free and open to the public.
Keeseville is a hamlet that has had long stretches without a grocery store. The most recent has lasted about four years after Mac’s Market in the heart of downtown Keeseville closed down in 2013. In the center of Keeseville’s downtown is an empty 8,000 square foot grocery store that serves as a gnawing reminder that the closest grocery store is about 20 minutes away by car. Despite the limited access to fresh food in Downtown Keeseville, there is a budding agricultural community developing on the outskirts of the hamlet. A 40-acre organic vegetable farm, a grass-fed dairy, and a sustainable beef, pork, and chicken operation have all grown over the past few years. » Continue Reading.
You’ve probably been to fund-raising events where artwork has been donated. This is a tradition that many artists feel is an important way to show their support for an organization or cause. Sometimes art is also used as a publicity tool, with pieces created specifically for a purpose or cause. Many historians have credited Frederick Church, and other 19th century artists, with helping promote the creation of the National Park system, through their paintings of places like Yellowstone and Yosemite. Hudson River School painters shared with the world the beauty of the Adirondack and Catskill regions.
AdkAction just hosted the first Keeseville Plein Air Festival, to draw attention to the historic community, the beautiful Ausable River, and flourishing area farms, and to raise funds for a downtown revitalization project. It was very successful.
This August, during the 2017 Adirondack Plein Air Festival (August 14-19), there is a new cause that we will be drawing attention to through art. The Friends of Eagle Island, who now own the beautiful and historic camp on Eagle Island, in Upper Saranac Lake, have big dreams and a huge renovation/restoration task ahead of them. » Continue Reading.
AdkAction will host Dr. Christina Grozinger, associate professor of entomology at Penn State University and the director of the Penn State Center for Pollinator Research at The Wild Center and View Arts on Wednesday and Thursday, July 19th and 20th for a lecture titled, “The Global Pollinator Crisis.”
Receptions will be held at 6 pm, and the lectures will begin at 7 pm. The Wild Center lecture requires an RSVP, both lectures are free and open to the public.
Grozinger will explain the importance of pollinators such as bees to agricultural production. She will also discuss the various reasons for the global declines in pollinator populations that have been documented in recent years, including pesticides, parasites, viruses, reduced genetic diversity, poor management practices of managed pollinator populations, and habitat destruction. She will highlight ongoing research at Penn State University, where scientists are seeking to better understand the impacts of these factors on pollinator health, and to find solutions that could be implemented locally, nationally, and globally. » Continue Reading.
Pollinator Week may be over, but efforts continue to educate on the global and regional importance of pollinators and to show people what they can do to help.
Events will be going on throughout the summer to educate the public, including lectures by Dr. Christina Grozinger, Director of Penn State University’s Center for Pollinator Research, July 19 at the Wild Center in Tupper Lake and July 20 at View Arts in Old Forge; showings of the film “More Than Honey” about why bees are facing extinction; gardening and beekeeping workshops and opportunities for learning to identify and monitor pollinators. See a calendar of events here. » Continue Reading.
ADKAction has spent the past three years helping spread the word out about the importance of milkweed. With the distribution of over 20,000 free seed packets now Adirondack roadsides, gardens, and community parks are thriving with the Monarch butterflies only food source.
According to ADK Action Executive Director Brittany Christenson, the organization began the Milkweed project at the time when the plight of the Monarchs was also receiving a lot of national press. At the time, some people couldn’t even recognize Monarchs, let alone understand that milkweed was the only plant where Monarchs laid eggs.
“The timing of the project was perfect,” says Christenson. “After talking with people we feel that we were able to help get the word out. People are aware of the Monarch’s issue and know what they can do to help. Now we are focusing our attention on a broader range of pollinators.” » Continue Reading.
The Adirondack Pollinator Project (APP) is a new initiative of AdkAction in partnership with The Wild Center, The Lake Placid Land Conservancy, and Common Ground Gardens, that features an extensive program of educational activities and events throughout the summer. The program will kick off at area farmers’ markets and The Wild Center during National Pollinator Week, June 19-25th.
Film showings, hands-on beekeeping, gardening and citizen science workshops, and free public lectures by pollinator researchers are planned throughout the Adirondacks to help inspire individual and collective action to help pollinators thrive. Highlights of the programming are two free public lectures from Dr. Christina Grozinger, Director of the Center for Pollinator Research at Penn State University, at The Wild Center on July 19th and at View Arts in Old Forge on July 20th. » Continue Reading.
AdkAction.org, established in 2011 by a group of local residents, is celebrating its 5th anniversary and has hired a new full-time Executive Director. According to an announcement sent to the press, the organization’s core mission is “getting things done for the Adirondacks by taking on non-partisan projects with widespread support that will benefit both permanent and seasonal residents.” Originally formed over property assessments, the group has since worked on Monarch butterfly preservation, a park-wide arts symposium, road salt and stream monitoring, and more.
Standing next to a small, unnamed stream near where it empties into Mountain Pond on a cool September day, scientist Dan Kelting reads a sensor he just dipped in the water to measure electrical conductivity, which is used to gauge road-salt concentrations.
Pure water is a poor conductor of electricity, but road salt, or sodium chloride, increases conductivity. Based on the conductivity reading (285 microsiemens per centimeter), Kelting calculates that the water contains 80 milligrams of chloride per liter. This means the stream contains roughly 160 times more chloride than a similar size stream a few miles away.
Why the difference? The stream near Mountain Pond, north of Paul Smith’s College, is downstream from Route 30, a state highway that is heavily salted in the winter. The other stream, which Kelting refers to as Smitty Brook, runs through the Forest Preserve and is upstream of roads. » Continue Reading.
On his way to becoming an internationally recognized scientist for his work on Monarch butterflies and the evolution of warning coloration in nature, Professor Lincoln Brower first tickled the funny bone of the scientific community with his elegant research and photos of “barfing blue jays” and proved that milkweed toxin protects Monarchs.
As a young scientist at Amherst College in the 1960s, Dr. Brower proved that the toxin that Monarchs ingest from feeding on milkweed plants as caterpillars is so potent at sickening birds that a blue jay once exposed to them in a careful lab experiment, and then given other foods for a month, would vomit at the sight of a Monarch. Dr. Brower’s photos of the unlucky jays, published in the Scientific American in February 1969, still circulate on the internet.
Adirondack residents will have the chance to hear Dr. Brower discuss that famous experiment and his subsequent decades of research on Monarch biology as well as the current threats to their survival in a lecture at The Wild Center, 7:30. p.m. Thursday, June 26. » Continue Reading.
Watching The Wild Center live telecast of the Wired Education teacher training day October 25th, I felt excited, inspired, amazed — and oh, so dumb.
I sat at my computer for five hours mesmerized by internationally respected educational consultant Alan November. His keynote address and two workshops were presented to almost 200 Adirondack teachers participating in person at The Wild Center and virtually at three remote sites. » Continue Reading.
Community leaders and elected officials have been invited to attend a Rural Communities Broadband Roundtable at The Wild Center on Thursday, Oct. 24. It is co-hosted by AdkAction.org, which initiated the event; the New York State Broadband Program Office; the United States Department of Agriculture/Rural Development Agency, which provides extensive funding for broadband services in rural locales; and The Wild Center.
The objective of the event is to assist towns and communities in the North Country to better understand how broadband can revitalize their communities and how they can best pursue universal access to broadband. » Continue Reading.
Mother’s Day doesn’t just have to be about getting a bouquet of flowers and box of candy, though I am a huge supporter of both, it is more about celebrating the mother figure in your life. It can be as simple as a packet of seeds to start in a windowsill garden or as complex as a family reunion.
My kids know that one way to make me happy is for someone to try to bring more native species to our garden. Last year my gift was the relocation of the wild violets to a hill before the contractor ground them to bits. I can look out my window and see the bright blue, purple and yellow heads just starting to poke out of the grass. » Continue Reading.
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